Scholarship and education
Posted by Joel Martinsen on Monday, August 28, 2006 at 5:10 PM
Last week, Peking University announced that it would unveil new, "standardized" school logos in September. The current version, designed in 1917 by Lu Xun at the behest of Cai Yuanpei, apparently has problems with "non-standard lines on the 'circular logo', the position of the lettering, and non-uniform coloring."
PKU seal, designed by Lu Xun.
Three new circular logos will be announced next month. Adjustments will also be made to Mao's calligraphic inscription of the university's Chinese name.
A brief item in today's China Times reveals that the new logos will change the university's name in English.
"Peking University," which has endured since 1912, will eventually give way to "University of Beijing." According to the CT article, since place names are typically used as adjectives in English only in informal names of schools, the more familiar "Beijing University" will be limited to colloquial usage. PKU had previously resisted calls to standardize its name with the official Pinyin romanization system.
Not everyone is happy with the changes. In a letter to the editors of the Chinese website of the Financial Times, commentator Jiang Bojing questions the motives behind this logo adjustment, wondering if it is a reaction to the hits PKU has taken this summer over competition from Hong Kong, shady financial dealings, and questionable faculty recruitment. He concludes:
Gridlock on campus is a common topic of discussion on the PKU BBS. Though the university has an underground parking garage, people still tend to park above ground, and the campus is sometimes jokingly referred to as a "parking lot."
Update: Fang Zhouzi weighs in on the CT report:
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The Eurasian Face : Blacksmith Books, a publishing house in Hong Kong, is behind The Eurasian Face, a collection of photographs by Kirsteen Zimmern. Below is an excerpt from the series:
Big in China: An adapted excerpt from Big In China: My Unlikely Adventures Raising A Family, Playing The Blues and Becoming A Star in China, just published this month. Author Alan Paul tells the story of arriving in Beijing as a trailing spouse, starting a blues band, raising kids and trying to make sense of China.
Pallavi Aiyar's Chinese Whiskers: Pallavi Aiyar's first novel, Chinese Whiskers, a modern fable set in contemporary Beijing, will be published in January 2011. Aiyar currently lives in Brussels where she writes about Europe for the Business Standard. Below she gives permissions for an excerpt.
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+ Religion and government in an uneasy mix (2008.03): Phoenix Weekly (凤凰周刊) article from October, 2007, on government influence on religious practice in Tibet.
+ David Moser on Mao impersonators (2004.10): I first became aware of this phenomenon in 1992 when I turned on a Beijing TV variety show and was jolted by the sight of "Mao Zedong" and "Zhou Enlai" playing a game of ping pong. They both gave short, rousing speeches, and then were reverently interviewed by the emcee, who thanked them profusely for taking time off from their governmental duties to appear on the show.